How Rhino took its mission-driven culture online
Rhino is redefining what it means to inspire people in a remote world.
Rhino’s mission is to make renting smarter and more affordable for renters. Our dedication to this mission informs everything we do — including our decision to go remote in 2020 to make sure the renters who rely on us wouldn’t have interruptions in their coverage.
To help us during this pivot, we developed strong company values that every member of our team uses to guide their work and stay connected to our business goals despite being remote. Our core values do more than align our work, they define why we work.
We have discovered that preserving our company culture and making a team of talented problem-solvers feel prioritized doesn’t depend on everyone being together in person.
Here’s how Rhino’s values kept our tight-knit team culture strong through the transition to remote work life.
We built our company culture on values that grow with us.
When the COVID-19 pandemic put the world on pause, our team was made up of 55 people headquartered in NYC with only 15% of our employee workforce distributed across the country.
Since then we’ve grown into a completely distributed team that will reach 200 members within the next few months. Our workforce spans across the US and into Europe and South America.
To keep our mission central to our culture, we rely on our universal values. We developed these values through work sessions with employees from across the organization to help our people understand their role at Rhino.
There are 5 of them in total:
- We are believers
- We act with intention
- We put community first
- We push forward
- We create choice
We understand that values evolve as a company grows, which is why we invite every person who joins our team to help develop our values. Our team is strongest when new members collaborate with veteran employees. This keeps us more connected and understanding of one another. The remote world may have changed how we collaborate, but it hasn’t been able to shake the foundation we built to constantly improve our methods.
Our workplace reflects the world we want to see.
When Rhino was founded in 2017, security deposit insurance was unheard of. Now, it’s a more accessible financial choice for renters across the country, with our company gaining significant investment from the tech community.
We rallied our business and livelihoods around security deposit insurance because we believe it’s a win-win that makes life better for renters while supporting property owners too.
We’re about providing access to resources, whether it’s for Rhino renters or members of the Rhino team.
The result is a long list of benefits offered to every Rhino employee. We hope to provide comprehensive support for our people the same way we provide comprehensive support for renters. That support becomes all the more important in the increasingly unpredictable world we live in.
Here are a few of the many benefits offered to Rhino employees:
- We give our employees unlimited PTO because people are taking less vacations even when we could all use a break.
- We cover 90% of employee health premiums through our comprehensive health, vision, and dental coverage because everyone has health on the mind right now.
- We offer competitive parental leave so families can grow during a time when parents are being asked to take on additional roles of daycare provider, teacher, and more.
- We offer 401k options for employees to start building and saving for the future.
We make sure our people have resources to lean on that help them lead healthier, more family-oriented, and more financially secure lives outside of work.
Creating a sense of belonging helps us maximize success.
The best way to build a security deposit insurance product for every American renter is by creating a team with the same diversity of background, thought, and experience that we see throughout America and the world.
Personal identity didn’t just go away when we all went online. Remote work itself can also create additional social isolation for employees who aren’t used to it.
To mitigate this, Rhino offers a number of opportunities to engage in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives. We work to foster a sense of belonging for all of our employees.
We’ve separated these initiatives into four categories:
- Employee-Led: Includes the establishment of employee resource groups, opt-in slack channels about inclusivity in the workplace, and open dialogue sessions about identity and current events.
- Hiring: Includes auditing our current hiring practices, incentivizing referrals that create a diverse workforce, and engaging in hiring-specific implicit bias training.
- Professional Development: Includes creating a sense of belonging with our employee mentorship “Oxpecker” program, establishing function-specific subcommittees, and diversifying our external consultants
- Education Initiatives: Includes company-wide implicit bias training, company-wide courageous conversation workshops, and education about the history of discrimination in multifamily housing.
Visit our careers page to learn more about Rhino’s company culture and see our open positions.